tv NBC Nightly News NBC May 6, 2015 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT
jose, san francisco and off to the east bay and possibility of thunderstorms. we will have more coming up at 6:00. up next nightly news with lester holt. see you soon. on this wednesday night, letting the air out. the long-awaited deflategate report is out pointing the finger at some on the new england patriots including super bowl mvp tom brady over those underinflated footballs. did they cheat? bob costas joins us tonight. take cover. tornadoes already spotted on the ground. millions in the potential path from texas to nebraska with watches and warnings throughout the night. and it's just getting started. alone in the cockpit. chilling new revelations tonight that the pilot that deliberately crashed a passenger plane may have practiced it on the flight before. and sibling rivalry. prince george is the most famous toddler in the world, but how will he share the spotlight with his little sister? "nightly news" begins right now.
good evening. breaking news as we come on the air tonight. we have been tracking a tornado outbreak across a wide area from kansas on into texas this evening, including a massive half mile wide twist they're roared through the oklahoma city area. several tornadoes have been confirmed across the region and there are reports of damage. nbc's jacob rascon is tracking it for us. >> power flash, large power flashes. >> reporter: late today millions of americans slammed by severe weather, including several confirmed tornadoes. >> it is really cranking down. we have tree damage. it is coming down right on top of us. >> reporter: in oklahoma, a storm chaser caught right in the middle. >> coming to the ground right now, this is it, folks. you got to be ready for it. mike, i've got trees coming down on me and power flashes. i've got to back out of here. >> reporter: the twister tearing away
pieces of the norman hotel, forcing students at the university of oklahoma to shelter in place. a tornadoes touch down in nebraska and kansas, where a storm chaser captured debris swirling across a road. al roker says a tornado emergency has just begun. >> this is a multiday threat. strong storms and severe weather stretching from kansas to nebraska and all the way down to texas. tomorrow damaging wind and hail, stretching from kansas into texas. and this goes right into friday. 13 million folks at risk. so this is a long track event. >> reporter: so far no reports of injuries. but damage like this is expected all over tornado alley. the red cross ready to move in. the massive severe weather system promising a long night. jacob rascon, nbc news, los angeles. now to another major story, the long-awaited report sought tonight on the sports controversy that seemed to have the whole country talking back in january. and it is painting the
new england patriots and their superstar quarterback tom brady in a very harsh light. the issue is whether the new england patriots cheated in the afc title game against indianapolis by under-inflating the footballs they used, in theory making them easier to handle. and now that report commissioned by the nfl makes the case that some on the team probably did and that brady was probably aware of it. nbc's ron mott is in foxborough, massachusetts, with details and reaction. ron, good evening. >> reporter: good evening, lester. this was only supposed to take three weeks, this investigation. it lasted more than three months. the patriots ownership and head coach bill belichick have been cleared of any wrongdoing. but tonight the sports world is sounding off about tom brady, one of the best to ever play the game, and whether he's a cheater. tom brady addressed the public in january and denied any involvement in what's become known as deflategate. intentionally removing air from footballs to make them easier to throw and catch. >> i've always played within the rules. i would never do anything to break the rules. i believe in fair play
and i respect the league. >> reporter: but today an investigation led by ted wells found it is more probable than not that the three-time super bowl mvp quarterback was at least generally aware of the inappropriate activities. the report said patriots personnel were involved in a deliberate effort to circumvent the rules. that jim mcnally, a locker room attendant and an assistant participated in a lib rat effort to release air from patriots game balls after the referee examined them. >> there's a mountain of circumstantial evidence although it still lacks that smoking gun. >> reporter: the controversy stemmed from the afc championship game in which the patriots soundly defeated the indianapolis colts 45-7 to advance to the super bowl. officials discovered 11 of 12 game balls used by brady and the patriots offense, different balls used by the opponent, were under-inflated below the minimum of 12.5 pounds per square inch. the investigation showed the two men disparaged brady in text messages after he complained about football air pressure. mcnally writing i'm
going to make that next ball a balloon. tom, 16 is nothing. wait until next sunday. nfl commissioner roger goodell said the league will consider taking disciplinary action saying in a statement we will continue our efforts vigorously to protect the integrity of the game and promote fair play at all times. reaction by fans outside the team stadium were mixed. >> it's a shame, but you know, i'll still be a patriots fan when it's all said and done. >> he's carried himself over the last 14, 15 years as a pro. acted as a pro. is just as much a pro off the field as he is on the field. and i suggest that what with we're talking about is much ado about nothing. >> reporter: at the super bowl bob kraft demanded an apology from the nfl if the investigation turned up no proof of wrong doing. >> i would expect and hope that the league would apologize to our entire team and in particular coach belichick and tom brady for what they have had to endure this past week.
>> reporter: today bob kraft issued a statement reiterating his disappointment in how this investigation was conducted but said the organization will accept the findings and take appropriate action. lester? >> ron mott, thank you. bob costas of nbc sports joins me now by telephone. bob, so much was made of this at the time. in football, how big a sin is this and is the league now compelled to take harsh action? >> the league is compelled to take action. i'd be very, very surprised if tom brady was suspended for even a game, but he's going to be hit, i think, with a substantial fine and based on precedent for other violations by other teams, probably the patriots will lose a draft choice or two. but it won't be a first round draft choice. this falls into the category if you look at it objectively of gamesmanship. not that it should be approved of, but if some other team that was less successful with a quarterback less glamorous and less in the discussion of among the all-time greats and with a
coach less controversial than bill belichick, i think it would be regarded as just, eh, one of those things. but because it's the patriots, because they have people who love them and like any team that's that successful, people who detest and resent them, it was a much bigger deal and especially because it led up to the super bowl it was a much bigger deal. this kind of thing looking to gain an edge happens all the time in sports. and that's all it was. looking to gain an edge. and they beat the colts soundly and it's worth noting that in the second half after they had adjusted the footballs, when they discovered something was wrong, in the second half of that game, brady actually did better than he did in the first half. >> right. bob costas. bob, thanks so much for being with us tonight. we appreciate it. >> okay. turning overseas now. new revelations about the german co-pilot who killed himself and 149 others by deliberately crashing a plane into the french alps back in march. a preliminary report revealing he may have practiced his ghastly plan or come close to carrying it out on the
flight right before. nbc's bill neely has details. >> reporter: it was deliberate mass murder, a full plane programmed to dive and crash. but co-pilot andreas lubitz had tried it before hours earlier setting the same plane to hit the ground. >> it was a repeat of the action he did on the flight. >> reporter: the first official report reveals an even more calculating, erratic man. the flight recorders from the plane's first flight to barcelona showed the captain left lubitz alone in the cockpit an hour and 20 minutes into the flight. in the four and a half minutes before he returned, lubitz repeatedly set the altitude control to 100 feet. its lowest setting. five times. but he switched back so the plane continued its normal, smooth, descent landing safely in barcelona. an hour after that, it took off again for its fatal
return flight. no one knew what he'd done. not the captain, the passengers, nor controllers. >> the only thing air traffic controllers would have been aware of is the actual position or altitude of the aircraft. they would not have known what the pilot had selected in the cockpit. >> reporter: lubitz may have been doing more than just rehearsing. >> it does look very much like he was planning to crash the aircraft on the way out but changed his mind for whatever reason. >> reporter: the report shows lubitz ignored 14 attempts by controllers to contact him. as well as alarms, warnings, and the pilot banging on the door. he was bent on killing himself and all those on board. for the passengers on the first flight, the report's new details will surely make chilling reading. bill neely, nbc news, london. an entire small town in north dakota had to be evacuated today when a train hauling hundreds of thousands of gallons
of crude oil derailed sparking a massive fire that sent an enormous cloud of black smoke into the sky. fortunately no injuries reported. dozens who lived nearby had to be moved away from the area. we're following two stories tonight about the alarming reach and influence isis has in this country. in a moment we'll hear exclusively from an nypd officer who survived an isis-inspired attack on the streets of new york. but first the terror attack in texas. federal investigators now telling us one of the gunmen was in contact with at least three known isis sympathizers in the days leading up to it. here's nbc justice correspondent pete williams. >> reporter: two weeks before the gathering in texas, the fbi and homeland security warned the nation's police that the event, quote, carries the risk of being targeted by violent extremists. noting that supporters of isis and other terror groups were on twitter calling for retaliation. investigators say elton simpson, one of the gunmen who attacked the event, was reading those calls. they say he followed a suspected
british recruiter called al britani and isis sympathizer and was communicating with an american now believed to be in somalia, mohammed hassan who specifically called for attacking the texas event. a week before the event, he tweeted, dm me. an invitation for private direct messages. a prominent pro-isis website has posted this picture top other gunmen nadir soofi, as isis extremists continue taking credit. researchers who track extremists online say simpson was one of 400 people in the west deeply immersed in jihadist tweets. experts say permanently shutting down twitter accounts that espouse violence is virtually impossible, but the effort helps. >> what happens is when twitter takes down accounts, the jihadists open new ones. but it takes some time for followers to find the new account. >> reporter: monitoring twitter messages tipped off fbi to many of the 39 people arrested in 13 states in recent
isis-related terror cases. but officials say it's a huge chore with more than 5,000 people following the kind of radical twitter accounts elton simpson did. pete williams, nbc news, washington. >> and as that probe continues, here in new york for the first time we're hearing from a police officer severely wounded in a horrible hatchet attack that authorities say was inspired by isis. we get that story tonight from jonathan dienst of our new york station wnbc. >> i said i'm going to die. i'm going to die. >> reporter: rookie officer kenneth healy never saw the axe wielding terrorist in what the nypd called a lone wolf terror attack. in october healey and three other officers were on routine patrol when a photographer asked them to pose for this photo. out of the corner of his eye, officer joseph meeker saw a figure closing in fast. what happens as you see this shadow? >> as i saw it, i put my arms up and i guess it hit off my foreman into the wall. i remember hearing
that loud bang. and i look over and my partner's down that quick. >> reporter: 25-year-old healey had been hit in the back of the head. his skull shattered. his brain damaged. but he was still conscious. >> i was just so confused. you know, one second you're taking a picture and the next, you know, i'm staring at my skull on the floor. >> reporter: authorities say the attacker zale thompson was self-radicalized inspired by watching isis videos. >> he started coming towards me and that's when training kicked in. >> reporter: officers taylor kraft and peter rivera opened fire, killing thompson. the entire incident lasted just six seconds. healey was carried to a patrol car and rushed to a hospital. >> i kept saying don't lie to me. don't lie to me. how bad is it? they were like, it's not that bad. >> reporter: for a time healey was paralyzed and lost much of his vision. but after surgeries and rehab, he's improving. >> it's just night and day. i couldn't count money, tie my shoes, put on a shirt. now a couple weeks ago i ran a
mile. >> reporter: healey knows he was targeted because of his uniform. >> these are the threats that police and law enforcement have to look out for. it's sad, but it's the world we live in right now. >> reporter: that's part of the reason his three partners say they're back on the streets. hoping healey will soon be with them. jonathan dienst, nbc news, new york. >> riveting account. maryland's governor today lifted the state of emergency in baltimore which was put in place last week when rioting broke out over freddie gray's death. today baltimore's mayor asked the justice department to open an investigation into whether the city's police department has a pattern of violating civil rights. six officers have been charged in connection with gray's death. still ahead tonight, big rigs can be awfully scary to get near when you're on the road. now imagine one that's driving itself totally hands free. it's not the future. it's already here. but is it safe? also, the mom who saved her family from a hostage situation by ordering pizza.
it can make for anxious moments on the road. you're driving next to a big rig holding tightly on the wheel and feeling way too close for comfort. well, soon that tractor-trailer may actually be driving itself. a kind of cruise control on steroids, if you will. we get the story tonight from nbc's joe fryer. >> i'm going to go ahead and push the button and turn it on. >> reporter: the self-driving car movement is truly growing. daimler has unveiled
the freightliner inspiration, an 18 wheeler that can drive itself. >> i'm completely hands free. >> reporter: the semitruck still needs a driver who steers it to the highway. from there cameras and sensors help keep the big rig in a single lane, a safe distance from other cars. but if there's an emergency, the driver takes over. >> at this point for us we feel it's really important to continue to have drivers in the vehicle. we absolutely want a driver to be able to take control at any time. >> reporter: in 2013 crashes involving large trucks killed nearly 4,000 people and injured 95,000 others. >> self-driving trucks are important because it could alleviate one of the hugest problems in this city and that's driver fatigue. >> reporter: the world's top automakers are developing and testing autonomous technology for personal vehicles. google is even working on a car with no steering wheel. >> and earlier this year -- >> i'm in the passenger seat, and you can see no one is in the driver's seat.
>> reporter: bmw showed us a car that can valet park itself. right now automakers can only test self-driving cars in four states. california, nevada, michigan, and florida, plus the district of columbia. >> this is a case where the technology is moving faster than the lawmakers. >> reporter: while daimler's semi is now licensed to drive on public roads in nevada, the company wants to conduct more tests and ignite a conversation about driverless driving. joe fryer, nbc news, los angeles. we're back in a moment with the reason why pope francis might want to start working on his jump shot.
former speaker of the house jim wright has died. he had a career in politics spanning decades. but the texas democrat will go down in history as the first speaker to resign amid scandal. wright stepped down in 1989 while facing a house ethics investigation over his financial affairs. a battle that some say marked the beginning of today's hyper-partisan climate. speaker wright was 92 years old.
employees at a florida pizza hut noticed something strange on an online order. a cry for help. police say a woman persuaded her boyfriend who was holding her and her children hostage to let her order pizza. she did so through a smartphone app and in the comments section she wrote, please help get 911 to me. that's exactly what they did. resolving the situation without anyone getting hurt. he has traveled the globe and now pope francis is a globetrotter. the harlem globetrotters made a visit to the vatican during their tour through italy. the iconic basketball tricksters made the pope an honorary member of the team. they gave him his own jersey and helped him spin the ball. he might want to work on that for a bit. when we come back, the royal baby and why one young man might not be as thrilled as the rest of us.
finally tonight, if you have young children at home or remember being one yourself, you might have a good idea what a certain british family is going through now that a new baby sister is in the picture. no doubt it has dawned on prince george it's no longer all about him. and in that sense, the royals are no different from the rest of us. as nbc's katy tur found out in london. >> reporter: william, kate, and kids headed for their
country home today. but now that princess charlotte is the center of attention, it may be dawning on prince george what a royal pain a younger sibling could be. >> my little brother's superpower is annoyingness. >> reporter: in fact, annoyingness was the top complaint of older siblings we unscientifically polled at a london playground. >> i think he's amazing and cute. but sometimes a pain in the neck. he's becoming a bit of a tyrant. >> reporter: these juniors, they just get in the way. >> i know that they should just keep quiet and don't start arguments. >> where are you in school? >> reporter: take my younger brother, for example. i mean, he should have known even way back then never keep a mic away from a budding journalist. >> stop talking. >> reporter: he did always say i was bossy. and it's true, younger siblings aren't always crazy about their big brothers or sisters either.
>> my brother is like my worst enemy ever. >> hey. i heard that. >> reporter: they actually think younger is better. >> they get away with stuff better. >> my brother gets to play if i do something wrong. >> reporter: so listen, george. it may be tough at first -- >> do you like your baby sister? >> no! >> do you love her? >> no! >> reporter: -- but look at the bright side. >> be happy about it because you've got -- because you're not going to be lonely anymore. >> reporter: after all, two can be better than one. just ask your dad. katy tur, nbc news, london. that will do it for us on this wednesday night. i'm lester holt. for all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night.
right now at 6:00 in town and on the move the road to the white house goes through the bay area for hillary clinton. good evening, thanks for being with us, i'm raj mathai. >> i'll jessica aguirre. some time for tea and time for a lot of fund-raising that's what's on the agenda as hillary clinton visits the bay area for the first time since officially announcing she is running for president. mrs. clinton's second high-dollar fund-raising event of the day is under way right now. we find nbc bay area's michelle roberts outside the century club in san francisco where that fund-raising event is under way.
>> reporter: yeah started just about an hour ago. $2700 just to get in the door. there's heavy police presence in this area tonight. and this afternoon, clinton made a stop in chinatown for an event with mayor ed lee, they had tea at the red blossom tea house and clinton is meeting with 200 supporters co-founder of the clothing company spree is hosting the fund-raiser and according to clinton's campaign today's events expected to bring in about $1 million. and some of the fund-raisers today, not everyone is cheering for clinton. some are here to send a message and oppose the keystone pipeline. >> she has had some strong words about climate but we have yet to see firm commitment. s to strong specific climate policies. so we really want to see, you know, her words come into action.